Based on Louise Penny’s #1 New York Times bestselling novels, “Three Pines” from Amazon Prime Video and Left Bank Pictures stars Alfred Molina as Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Sûreté du Québec, a man who sees things that others do not: the light between the cracks, the mythic in the mundane, and the evil in the seemingly ordinary.
Discuss the series with other Louise Penny fans here!
286 replies on “Three Pines Series Discussion”
What a fascinating approach to these characters who’ve been “real” in my head for so long! Town was far better portrayed than last movie’s attempt, tho church seemed too big and fancy from what I pictured. Almost all players seemed true to books. Story line was a bit too melodramatic/mystery focused when books allow more natural unfolding of cases but I guess that’s what tv requires. SO excited for next installment!
I just finished the first two episodes, and wow! I love the way they were done. The inclusion of a lot of French dialogue and music made the episodes feel very Québecois. The inclusion of the MMIWG storyline was also very well done and a good inclusion to the book. I always know that a series can’t be exactly like the books, but I think they did a good job, especially with the series skipping over Still Life and starting with the second book. I did miss Gamache’s good relationship with the villagers though, he felt much more cold towards him and them towards him. I hope this is something that changes as the series goes on, because right now it seems to be missing the homey, safe feeling of Three Pines which is what makes the place and the book series so special.
I always tread with trepidation to watch a TV adaptation or movie, because in my view, “the book is always better.” However I think they did a great job with casting and honoring the spirit of Louise Penny’s writing. I’m always a little sad to see TV characters displace the characters in my mind, but Molina was almost exactly as I envisioned him! Same with Reine-Marie. So that makes me feel I’m somewhat simpatico with Louise Penny. I’ve read every book, not yet the latest. Looking forward to it, they are always a treat to be savored.;
I enjoyed the first two episodes, casting Molina was inspired, they are therefore forgiven for getting Jean-Guy so wrong. He is far too old. I wondered if they would make Cree the Chubbo she was meant to be, they get A for effort. Keeping Cree silent on the big screen was always going to be a non-starter, I thought they managed the dialogue well.
It could do with a stronger sound track, this is disappointing and highlights the one weakness of the series. The village of three pines does not work as well as I’d hoped, this is where good music in the background may have helped.
Overall I can see why Louise gave it 80% , I will hold off on giving %ages until I’ve seen the other 6 episodes which I understand accumulate intensity each episode, like her books.
I was relaxed about the use of indigenous people which I think was cleverly done by Amazon as Louise often uses events that are based on fact that have often been swept under rug. Seeing that Canadians can sometimes behave in shameful ways is good for us.
I am a Canadian living abroad and I have heard about the horrific physical and sexual abuse in the Indian residential schools and believe it’s good to have our noses rubbed in it. We must understand that this kind of behaviour happens in our NICE country-accepting responsibility for these kinds of events is the first step to ensuring we do not behave so shamefully in the future.
I am terribly sorry these things happened and the least we can do is give them (the American Indians) some air time in what is likely to be seen by a large global audience.
i hope louise penny continues this wonderful book series. I have her new book and of course it will be wonderful
This series was cancelled for a second season. I am disappointed.
The latest book, a World of Curiosities, is her ABSOLUTE BEST Listened on Audible and Narrator was superb! Bien fait Mme Penny.
So…. I watched the series first. So I had nothing to compare it to. I’m going to rewatch now that I’ve read 4 of the book. I agree with many comments now that I’ve read the books… prior to that Three Pines is what lead me to the book series so I’m not disappointed. I’m thrilled I found the books now. So rich! Complex! Multifaceted!
It was marvelous to see these books streaming for everyone to enjoy. My only problem was the amount of French which was spoken in the first episode without translation. In the second episode they caught up with the fact that not all of us spoke French.
I hope that there will be many seasons to come. I can’t wait for next week
I’m enjoying them too- a different take on my much loved books. Number 18 is awesome! I’ve read it twice already
I think the rather mystical uncertainty works because Armand doesn’t know these people yet. He has to consider all of them as suspects, at this point. I liked the low-level creepiness:) I’ve seen just the first ep, but it was so well done! Saving the next one for tonight.
Well done Amazon! I thought the casting was spot on although I had always pictured Jean-Guy younger, and Clara older.
Loved the subplot of missing indigenous women.
Couldn’t we please have an Inspector Gamache with a French accent and mannerisms and subtle wit? Loved Isabelle and the First Nation motif and the cold. Action would have flowed more with a better sound track.
Maybe, but I’m tired of having obtrusive music and sound F.X. attacking and distracting me in American TV, so the quiet here is actually a boon.
I agree about the casting and ages of some of the characters. Also, Clara’s hair isn’t wild enough. But those are minor quibbles. The first two episodes have portrayed Gamache’s character extremely well. Can’t wait for the rest of the series!
Agreed! I love the books and the series is good but actors very good more please!
I also pictured Jean-Guy as younger, and Clara as a bit older. But this is an excellent start to a hopefully long series!
I’ve always enjoyed Penny’s books. I also always thought they read a lot like a tv show (in a good way, very visual writing). I am over the moon about there being a series and I hope it gets 20 seasons.
I agree with Louise that I’m 80% happy with the Amazon series. I hope the locals warm up to Gamache and his group. There’s a lot of hostility that contradicts the fact that Three Pines is a refuge where people can go to heal. I like the addition of the indigenous people’s stories. The character of Myrna is off – she is not as described. I still envision her as a large black woman with a commanding presence but with warmth and intelligence. There is a danger that some characters can become caricatures and not be taken seriously – namely Myrna, Ruth and Nicole. I’m happy with the other characters -Molina is excellent. This has been a wonderful week. I read book 18 which I ended up loving. I watched the 2 first episodes on Amazon on day 1 and will re-watch before episode 3 and 4 drop. Three pines is my happy place. I hope the series lasts for years and years.
It was fantastic. Great job of capturing the book but making it your own. Loved how the scenery and the season and weather set the tone just as in the book. Can’t wait to see how the characters develop. Super job more than lived up to expectations without disappointing an avid reader.
I have just binged the episodes and am so conflicted. I have read all books in the series and consider Ms. Penny in the top 3 of my favorite writers. I mourn when I finish each book as I do not want to leave the graciousness of Three Pines. I have read the Three Pines series in its entirety twice now and will be reading them all again I am sure. My problem is that the show has flipped the image in my mind of each and every character that I have held these many years. Of course it did! It is someone’s else’s version! I knew this was coming, I just didn’t know that I would feel so strongly. In my mind, the village is not as quaint …The people are too old or not old enough…On and on I could go, but I think that you get the point. I am wondering if anyone else is feeling this? In a nutshell, strangers have replaced the “Three Pines family” that I have known and loved all these years. I guess that sums it up for me. Most likely I will continue to watch. But, for now my grief is too new to make a fair review. Keep the words coming Ms Penny. I love every one of them.
Totally agree! I refuse to let the video spoil my imagination of Three Pines! Agree that “strangers have replaced the Three Pines family.” No one but the Ruth character match my imagination. Will continue to watch, but this is Amazon’s attempt to portray Penney’s stories. Unfortunately, they failed whereas she succeeded.
I feel the same. I have reread All the books and was heartbroken watching the series. Who ever was in charge of casting never read the books!
Totally off on everyone!
This was not the village of ThreePines! Even the Bien Venue sign was off! Most of the people in this region speak French!
I don’t know if I will watch anymore.
Beautiful summing of my feelings, thank you. My calming place, much loved characters, and the desire to not have a story end are no where in this television series version of the books.
I agree with you. For no reason, the writers flipped Gabri and Olivier, changed Myrna into a scolding, average weight light skinned person, knocked 20 years off Clara, just for a start. Little development of Gamache and Beavoir’s relationship and changed the plot of all mysteries as well as simplifying them. Even the church is a big old brick thing instead of a white clapboard small sanctuary. The biggest miss are the Three Pines. What the What??
I’m inspired to start reading them all again! Loved the first episode but I had envisioned the village as more modest than the one where it was filmed. Ruth is exactly as I imagined her, some others not so much. Don’t recall so many First Nations characters in the books, but I like it.
Just watched the first two episodes. I, like the author, was 80% pleased.
Great #18, and a wonderful series. Can’t wait for the next two episodes to drop. I can’t wait to see 3 Pines in the summer and Spring.
I really get Louise Penny’s comment that she was 80% happy with the show. Great shows based on books have to be their own thing, but I’m hoping the tone of the show changes a bit. Living on the Vermont side of the border (I’m 15-20 minutes from “Three Pines” or at least the town where it was filmed) I don’t think of this area as being so desolate and mystical. I also didn’t get that vibe from the books. So love the cast, waiting to see on the writing, and really don’t think the soundtrack works well at all. Hope the aren’t trying to make a Québécois Twin Peaks.
I agree- the sound track is very patchy and rarely adds suspense.
Actually, I like the freedom from the usual “look here, idiot” sound track.
Is this a discussion of the books or the Amazon series? I’d be interested to participate in a discussion of the series. We’ve already discussed the books many times.
My take on the series after the first two episodes: Molina is superb. Excellent pick for Gamache. Thought it was interesting that the villagers were depicted as being hostile to Gamache et al. Will be interesting to see how this plays out.
Reserving judgment on Jean-Guy. Agent Nicole is completely different from the books and very goofy. I believe she provides a vehicle for Gamache to make his training pronouncements. Ruth is so Ruth! Without anything being said, I could sense Peter’s jealousy of Clara. And whoever is playing the bad guy (whose name escapes me at the moment) at the Surete (don’t know how to make accents work here), he’s perfect. Perfectly smarmy. Reminds me of the song from My Fair Lady: “Oozing charm from every pore, he oiled his way across the floor.” This guy is oozing smarm.
I’m loving the treatment of the pain experienced by the native women–do not like their pain, but the treatment of it is very sensitive.
Absolutely loved the first episode; all the actors are perfect as their characters. So love the story as I always do with the books. Holding off for second episode as my ‘treat’ tonight. But it is hard holding off.
When I read the books I read them almost all in one sitting though I really try to slow down so I can just immerse and enjoy them but I just get pulled into the story and don’t want to put it down. And yes , I have then read some of them two or three times, maybe more, and now the latest book is due in the mail today and I’m thinking what I really should do is start from the first book and read all of them again before I read that one but time will tell.
Barbara Jackman, you are me. LOL. I’m afraid to start the series visually as these folks live in my mind and heart after all these years. I think if I watch it will forever change the books….
Never. Imagination becomes a living thing.
I love the books, and have read them all, like you. I am, however, baffled that you love the series. Personally, I find there is little to no connection to the books, other than the character names. Gabri and Olivier are the opposite of who they are in the books. Myrna is clearly not a 50-ish former psychologist, Clara has no food in her hair, the church is brick instead of white clapboard, I don’t remember anything in any of the books about a Blue Jay feather (although I may have missed that), and there are no pine trees in the village green. Mind you, I think that the character of CeCe was well-cast and portrayed.
I am sincerely curious to know what similarities you find between the books and the series. I am open to hearing your perspective, in the hopes that I might see it through your eyes.
Had to log on at work this morning to get a pick at the series. I can’t wait to watch tonight when I get home. I was trying to recall what book this was based on. Does anyone know.
I two have her new book. Waiting until school is out for winter break so I can read it.
It is based on , but somewhat different than, the book A Fatal Grace.
The plot regarding CC is based on the book A FATAL GRACE.
I enjoyed the first two episodes. I am sure A few changes were made to help introduce the characters and setting.
Are the episodes dropping weekly and how many have been filmed?
Fantastic! loved the first two episodes
Watching the first two episodes was the first thing I did this morning. I loved them and can’t wait for more to follow. I’ve read all of Louis Penny’s Three Pines books (well, I’m a third of the way through the newest one). Such a wonderful writer, storyteller, and crime detective!!
Love Louise Penny books! Far superior to all other writers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Have read all of Louise Penny’s books, I’m order!!! Loved every one! Just wish she would write faster, so there would be even more books! Just today finished her latest book! Honestly,mot was the best book I have ever read. Could not put it down!!! Several plot lines going on , at the same time! Just found it FABULOUS!!!! It’s difficult waiting for her next book to come out. As nothing else comes close to the wonder of her books!!!! Looking at a long year ahead , waiting for the satisfaction, and total excitement of her next book! No other author even comes close to her!!!!!!
I read these excellently written books by Louise Penny slowly because I do not want to miss anything. It takes time to write such books with the many treasures and twists included within many phrases and sentences and paragraphs. Grateful for the fine writing that awakens every one of our senses.
I also love her books…above all others. I have her new book but am going to savour it to read during Christmas. I cry with every book…and when I find myself sad because I just finished her latest….EASY….I start all over again from the beginning. I have read all of them several times.
Please tell me there is another Ganache book after this one !!!